Stop a moment and think about it – when is the last time you said or heard these words? Sometimes we just don’t “get” each other. Let’s look at some extremes together (and have a little Myers-Briggs Personality Types lesson at the same time!)
Introverts can think Extraverts are shallow and have a hard time focusing or going deep in relationships. Extraverts may think Introverts are socially handicapped and may need some inner healing.
INtuitives who get the big picture and are naturally future thinkers don’t understand why Sensors don’t just naturally understand where things are going. Sensors don’t get why INtuitives have their heads in the clouds with all their ideas and wish they could be more concrete and real.
Feelers and Thinkers probably have the hardest time understanding each other and though they are next in the Myers-Briggs line up, I’m saving them for last.
Judgers (or “Plan-it’s”) don’t get how Perceivers (or “Wing-it’s”) can function at all. J’s think P’s would benefit from a more structured lifestyle, while P’s think J’s are a little stiff and would benefit from a chill pill!
“I don’t know what you want from me!” It’s the Feelers and Thinkers that will most often be saying those hurtful words to each other. Feeling or Thinking is the part of ourselves where decisions are made and problems are solved. They both resolve life’s issues in completely different ways. SO, when a Feeler is down what he or she wants is to feel better. Distraction might be nice or empathy even, but Thinkers “help out” by offering a plan or working toward choosing action steps. In this case the Feeler does not usually feel helped but rather judged or unheard. On the contrary when the Thinker is down, or more likely perplexed, the Feeler tries to make them “feel” better by distracting them or comforting them when what the Thinker really wants is to resolve by making a plan or clarifying next steps.
To distract a Thinker is not to care about how they process, they want to think it through. To distract a Feeler is to help them feel better, they want relief from whatever got them down. While both types likely want to talk things out – the end goal for each is different. Thinkers resolve through working through to a decision, Feelers resolve through relief from whatever was making them feel bad.
I’ve been studying personality typing for a long time now and still find it rather fascinating and yet even though I know what my family or friends might need in order to process I still offer what seems best to me!
It takes a conscious effort to meet someone where they are at and to truly think about “what they want from you.” Next time you want to say those words, try truly asking how you can be there for them instead of reacting in frustration. Or next time you hear those words coming your way – stop and explain what you would really like. It might be easier than you think to walk through things together if you can just see things from another perspective.